This news blog is an educational exercise involving students at the University of Minnesota. It is not intended to be a source of news.

Analysis: Data

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For this analysis, I found a New York Times article about illegal internet gun sales that was posted on NICAR's Extra, Extra! blog.

This story draws on online postings for gun sales, criminal records, and past interviews/articles to flesh out this story. The reporter had to have some knowledge of searching databases to find the criminal records and interviews, Also, the reporter would have to have some knowledge of general search skills if they didn't know about online gun retailers like Armslist before reporting this story.

This story used interactive graphics primarily to show some of the online ads for weapons it describes through text. Some words in the descriptions of these ads are highlighted with a little picture of a camera next to it, which is how the reader would know its a graphic. Upon clicking on it, a small box with the ad will pop up on the page, allowing the reader to see the original ad without having to navigate away from the page. These graphics are interesting, because they give the reader to see how casual these arms dealers are in their online interactions in a way that just text really wouldn't be able to convey.

Driver in Fridley rollover crash had been drinking

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Minnesota State Patrol says the driver of an SUV that rolled over north of interstate 694 in Fridley on Saturday night had been drinking, the Star Tribune reports.

The driver, 35-year-old Jennifer Teetzel, was also the only person inside the SUV to be wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash, Minnesota State Patrol Lt. Eric Roeske said. All seven of the SUV's occupants, ranging in age from four to 47, were sent to the hospital for treatment of their injuries and are in serious condition, KMSP reports.

No other vehicles were involved in the crash, which left the SUV on its roof on University Ave. Court records show that Teetzel has had run ins with the law over drunken driving prior to Saturday's accident, including a 2009 conviction for for third-degree drunken driving, and a careless driving case in 2003 where a charge of fourth-degree drunken driving had been dismissed.

President Obama got more laughs and appreciation for his jokes than headliner Conan O'Brien did at the annual White House Correspondents Dinner, which was held Saturday at the Washington D.C. Hilton, The Atlantic Wire reports.

Many social media commentators took to Twitter Saturday night to critique O'Brien, who many say shied away from heavier hitting jokes in favor of "gentle" material. Others suggested the dinner should forget having a comedian "headliner," instead giving the President a chance to show off his funny side.

President Obama used his set of jokes to critique the media, including NBC for its struggling lineup of shows and CNN for its inaccurate reporting following the Boston bombings, NBC News reports.

"I know CNN has taken some knocks lately," Obama said. "But the fact is I admire commitment to cover all sides of a story, just in case one of them happens to be accurate."

But Obama also used his time at the mic to praise first responders at the scene of the bombings and the media, saying that the event gave the nation a chance to see "journalists at their best." Conan O'Brien, who is a Boston native, also took time out of his set to address Boston and thank Obama for traveling there after the attacks.

An explosion rocked the Koda Energy plant in Shakopee Thursday afternoon, forcing the seven employees on site to evacute, the Star Tribune reports.

Emergency personnel were called to the scene shortly after 1 p.m. in response to the explosion, which occurred inside a tank at the biomass fuel plant that supplies power for neighboring Rahr Malting, KARE 11 reports.Fire crews stayed on site for at least two hours after the original call with their hoses aimed at the area of the original explosion as a safety precautions.

The explosion could be felt in homes and offices blocks away, but resulted in no injuries. Authorities told people within a 1-mile radius to stay inside until further notice, but that there was "no immediate danger."

A Shakopee resident tweeted out the news of the explosion shortly after it occurred, saying "our office building shook on Shumway St. and we saw smoke and then squad cars raced by." Bob Nagel, owner of nearby Bob's Lawn and Landscaping, said in the 19 years he's worked in the area he only remembered one small explosion.

At least 80 dead in Bangladesh building collapse

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A building near Bangladesh's capital that housed several garment factories collapsed Wednesday morning, killing at least 80 people and injuring hundreds more, USA Today reports.

The collapse draws attention to the unsafe conditions of Bangladesh's garment industry, and comes just months after a fire at another factory killed 112 people. Workers report being nervous to enter the building after multiple cracks were discovered yesterday, even after managers assured workers there was no problem. During a visit to the collapse site, Home Minister Muhiuddin Khan Alamgir said that those responsible for the violation of buildings codes would be found and punished.

Health Minister A.F.M. Ruhal Haque said that at least 80 people died in the collapse, and that at least 600 more were injured, the New York Times reports. Crews worked with machinery and bare hands to move the rubble, and see if any survivors remained buried.

The collapse is another tragedy in the Bangladesh garment industry, which supplies clothes for retails giants like Walmart, H&M, Tommy Hilfiger, and Gap. Many have criticized the working conditions in Bangladesh, where labor costs are the lowest in the world. The fire in November brought to light to terrible working conditions of these factories, after managers told workers the fire alarm was just a drill. Companies like Walmart that outsource their labor to Bangladesh have denied any knowledge of the working conditions in the country, placing the blame on subcontractors within the industry.

Boston Marathon bomber suspect charged

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The only known surviving suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings was charged by prosecutors in his hospital room Monday, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was charged with one count of using and conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction in the U.S. and one count of malicious destruction of property with an explosive device. If convicted, Tsarnaev could face the death penalty if convicted.

Prosecutors charged Tsarnaev in his room at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where he remains in serious condition, NBC News reports. The White House said today that because he is a naturalized U.S. citizen, Tsarnaev will be charged in civilian court and not in a military commissions.

So far Tsarnaev, who is communicating with authorities through writing, has not listed a motive for last week's attacks. The parents of Tsarnaev and his brother Tamerlan, who was killed during a shootout with police late Thursday night, believe their sons were framed.

The first major marathon to take place after the bombings at the Boston Marathon began with 30 seconds of silence on Sunday, CNN reports.

The moment of silence was just one of the many tributes to the victims of Monday's Boston bombings. Many of the 36,000 runners wore black ribbons or shirts that said "Boston" on them, and race organizers said they plan on donating $3 to The One Fund Boston for each runner who crosses the finish line.

The London Marathon draws thousands of spectators in addition to the runners, and race organizers increased the amount of security as an added safety precaution after Monday's attack, CBS reports. Police added 40 percent more officers and surveillance to ensure the safety of race participants and spectators, but authorities said that canceling the race was never an option.

Some of the racers participating had previously run in the Boston marathon, and said they wanted to run as a memorial. "It is terrible what happened in Boston, but we can't look back, we must look forward," said racer Tomasz Hamerlak, who competed in both races. "The show must go on."

Shooting in Shakopee leaves 1 dead, 2 injured

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A shooting late Thursday night in Shakopee has left one man dead, and two others injured, KARE 11 reports.

Police were called to the Hunters Ridge Apartments around 10:45 p.m. Thursday, where they found Marcos Antino Pantaleon, 19, dead of a gunshot wound. Two other men, a 21-year old and a 17-year-old, were found inside the apartment with gunshot wounds, and were transported to Hennepin County Medical Center for treatment.

Three men were seen leaving the apartment around the time of the shooting, the Pioneer Press reports. No arrests have been made. Scott County Sheriff's department, Shakopee and Savage police departments and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is assisting in the investigation.

Authorities say the shooting doesn't appear to be a random act of violence. Pantaleon attended Shakopee High School, and had plans to attend college and become an auto mechanic, his principal send.

Missionary from Waseca vanishes in Africa

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A missionary from Waseca disappeared while piloting his small plane through a tropical storm on a trip from South Africa to Mali 10 days ago, MPR reports.

Family and friends of 54-year-old Jerry Krause believe he could still be alive, after initial searches failed to turn up any wreckage or emergency signals near the Gulf of Guinea, where Krause was last heard from. The Gulf of Guinea has recently become a hot spot of armed pirate activity, a fact that worries Krause's family.

"After much research and digging, there is a 50 percent chance that Jerry's plane crashed," Krause's family said in a post on their website Wednesday, according to the Pioneer Press."That other 50 percent is the probability that he was captured and forced to fly for some drug lords or guerrilla members. There is evidence now to support both scenarios."

Krause, who has lived in Mali for 16 years, and his wife served as a missionaries with the Mission Aviation Fellowship until it left the country in 2009. The Krauses chose to stay in Mali, despite increases in jihad-related violence. During his flight, Krause was in contact with a control tower on an island off the coast of Gabon. Lightning struck the tower, cutting all communication, the tower control operator said. When power came back on, no contact with Krause could be made.

After days of uncertainty and difficulties with Krause's cell phone company and local authorities helping with the search, his family filed a missing person's report with the United States, which will allow the National Transportation Safety Board to begin an investigation into his disappearance.

Post-election violence in Venezuela leaves 7 dead

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At least 7 people were killed and dozens more injured across Venezuela in post-presidential election violence Monday, CNN reports.

Violence erupted Monday night after officials announced Hugo Chavez's chosen successor Nicolas Maduro as the winner of the election, despite demands from supporters of challenger Henrique Capriles Radonski for a recount. Maduro won 50.8 percent of the votes, with Radonski winning 49 percent, Venezuela's National Electoral Council said. Authorities say the close results incited the violence, despite the candidate's urging for their supporters to remain calm.

Protests continued across the country Tuesday, as Chavez-Maduro supporters lighting firecrackers and students clashing with soldiers armed with tear gas and plastic bullets, Fox News reports.

Supporters of Radonski claim the election was rigged in Maduro's favor with malfunctioning voting machines, inconsistencies in tallies reported by voting centers and opposition witnesses being forced out of hundreds of polls. Maduro said he will crack down on the opposition, and "use an iron fist" on anyone attempting to unseat him from the presidency.